I LIVE IN SEATTLE, unfortunately, but I spend an awful lot of time in Portland—downtown Portland is my not-so-top-secret writing-on-a-deadline hideout—and my frequent visits have convinced me of one thing: Portland is WAY sexier than Seattle. While Seattle teems with the blue-nosed, the busybodies, and the tech-jillionaires, Portland teems with the young, the hot, and the sex positive. You Portlanders can drink in your strip clubs and know for a fact that your mayor has had sex with someone. Seattle's city council tried to close our strip clubs and our mayor wouldn't whip out his dick if his pants were on fire.
But when it comes to porn, Portland, we're creaming your asses—er, maybe that's a poor choice of words. Let's just say that when it comes to porn—and porn festivals—Seattle tops Portland. We're topping you pretty brutally.
Five years ago The Stranger, the Mercury's sister paper, launched HUMP!, Seattle's biggest, best, and only amateur porn festival. We invited Seattleites to make short porn videos, hard- or softcore, selected the best ones, and hosted a weekend's worth of round-the-clock screenings. The first HUMP! was such a smash that we made it an annual event. HUMP!'s fame has spread far and wide and every year we get submissions from amateur pornographers, adventurous filmmakers, and fun-loving exhibitionists in cities all over the country, from Seattle, Chicago, Los Angeles, and New York City.
But we've never gotten a HUMP! submission from Portland.
So consider yourselves served, Portland: We either see some HUMP! submissions from Portland or I will publicly declare that Seattle—dickless Seattle—is our region's sexiest city.
Besides, the Mercury will be hosting a weekend full of HUMP! screenings in October, featuring the best amateur porn from the Northwest—and how pathetic would it be if none were from Portland? So let's do this!
Here's what you need to know to enter:
• We work hard to make HUMP! safe, fun, and anonymous. People make films and submit them to us; we make only two screening copies and return the originals. Our only copies are destroyed live onstage after the final screening. We've hosted DOZENS and DOZENS of HUMP! screenings over the last four years, with ZERO leaks! HUMP! lets you be a porn star for a weekend—not for life! And HUMP! films don't have to be hardcore. Animation, instructional videos, mechanical dogs, and sexy, non-explicit shorts have all been featured in HUMP!
• CASH PRIZES: HUMP! isn't just about love and sex and laughs. HUMP! is also about cash prizes. There are two award categories in HUMP!—"Sexiest" and "Funniest"—and a $2,000 first-place prize is awarded in both categories. (The winners are determined by audience ballot.) There are also $500 second-place prizes and $250 third-place prizes in both categories.
• HOW LONG DOES MY FILM NEED TO BE? The maximum length for HUMP! submissions is five minutes. Your film can be shorter. If you feel your film is brilliant at, say, 6:15 and harmed at 5:00, you are welcome to submit two versions, i.e., a five-minute cut and a longer cut. But you must submit both cuts. If the HUMP! jury agrees that the longer version of your film is superior, we may make an exception for your film.
• EXTRA CREDIT! We ask HUMP! filmmakers to use certain props and to shoot at certain locations so that audiences will know when they're watching something made just for HUMP! This year's extra-credit props: a pink slip (layoff or undergarment), Mormon undergarments, motorcycle boots, e-stim unit, Aplets & Cotlets. Extra-credit Portland locations: Voodoo Doughnut, "The Devil's Testicle" (the ugly public art across from Powell's City of Books), Portland City Hall bathroom, the "Made in Oregon" sign. Filmmakers are not required to use extra-credit props or locations, and not using them doesn't count against you with the HUMP! jury.
• STUFF THE HUMP! JURY WOULD LIKE TO SEE: Fem-dom action, CFNM, pegging. Including these themes won't get your film into HUMP! automatically, but it will give you a serious leg up. There have been lots of films featuring tied up and/or submissive women over the last couple of years—not that there's anything wrong with that—but turnabout is fair play, and the HUMP! jury wants to see some women on top this year!
• STUFF THE HUMP! JURY DOES NOT WANT TO SEE: Nothing illegal, please, and HUMP! has a strict "no poop, no kids, no animals" policy.
• GET STARTED! All submissions must be received by September 21, 2009, and delivered in person or by mail to Portland Mercury's offices at 605 NE 21st, Suite 200, Portland, OR 97232.
More info about entering HUMP!—deadlines, disclosure forms, and more—can be found at www.portlandmercury.com/hump. So c'mon, Portland! What are you waiting for? Show Seattle how creative and sexy you can be... and maybe win $2,000 in the process!
You know you want to... so... LET'S HUMP!